Mental Health Issues in Identity Theft. Identity Theft. Module 1 – Identity Theft 101. Learning Objectives for Module 1. Define identity theft. Describe ways personal information is acquired and used by identity thieves.
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Module 1 – Identity Theft 101
This was produced by the Texas Identity Theft Coalition, Texas Legal Services Center, and Trauma Support Services of North Texas under Sub-award funding from the Maryland Crime Victims Resource Center, Inc. (MCVRC) under Cooperative Agreement No. 2010-VF-GX-K014, awarded by the Office for Victims of Crime, office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed herein are those of the contributors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice or of the MCVRC.
What is Identity Theft?
The theft or misuse of personal identifying information in order to gain something of value or facilitate other criminal activity.
Texas Penal Code § 32.51:
to obtain, possess, transfer, or use a person’s “identifying information” or “telecommunication access device” with the intent to harm the person.
Personal information that can be used to commit identity theft includes:
Social Security Number
Date of Birth
Financial account numbers or access cards
Passwords, Mother’s maiden name, Father’s middle name, answers to “challenge” questions
Loss of credit rating
Harassment by bill collectors
Loss/denial of employment
Denial of drivers license renewal
Denial of public benefits
Denial of medical careVictim Experiences
Download free from www.idvictim.org
the time spent – in case they can
request restitution later.
7 years (police rpt.)
Write each bureau
No new credit
Fee w/o police rpt.Fraud Alert vs. Credit Freeze
What is it?
A law enforcement report that shows that the crime was reported and that contains enough information about the crime that CRAs and businesses can substantiate the ID theft.
How to get one
In Texas, you won’t. The public portion of our police reports does not contain enough information to serve as an IDT Report under the FCRA.
So, what’s a consumer to do?
Make a report to the FTC on the website. Print it, sign it in front of witnesses or a notary. This becomes an identity theft affidavit. Attach it to the police report.
Two step process:
BIGGEST CONSUMER MISTAKE: Failing to follow-up in writing!
FCRA gives consumers rights to:
MUST BE IN WRITING and attach:
Sample letters available at www.idvictim.orgor www.idtheft.gov/probono
FCRA gives consumers the right to get a copy of fraudulent account records and prevents creditors from placing a disputed account with a debt collector.
MUST BE IN WRITING and attach:
Sample letters available at www.idvictim.orgor www.idtheft.gov/probono.
Report to local law enforcement, get a copy
Victim requests medical records from own doctor
Request victim’s medical records from providers that gave care to the thief. Important: Do not mention identity theft at this point.
Write providers who gave care to the thief requesting correction or segregation and flagging of records. Attach: police report, victim’s ID, relevant portions of genuine records.
Confirm in writing that records have been corrected and review corrections.
Get a copy of victim’s earnings record from SSA
Mark items that are not the victim’s, provide supporting documentation, request corrected statement
Provide corrected earnings statement and supporting documents to IRS
Request that victim’s SSN be flagged
IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit:
Texas Stolen Identity File:
Local sheriff takes photo and fingerprints
Verifies that victim is not the criminal
Submits to DPS
Victim receives confirmation letter and password
If crime is in another state, contact law enforcement there, provide proof of victim’s identity and alibi information, request letter of clearance.
Provide letter of clearance to relevant businesses, agencies, and data brokers.
Bus. & Comm. Code Sec. 521.101-521.105
Expanding Services to Reach Victims of Identity Theft and Financial Fraud, an e-publication of the OJP, http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/ovc/pubs/ID_theft/pfv.html
Department of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime, searchable database of victim service providers, http://ovc.ncjrs.gov/findvictimservices/
IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit,
Manager of Hotline Programs, Texas Legal Services Center
815 Brazos, Suite 1100
Austin, TX 78701